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AKQA Slashes Staff in San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO—Citing “continued softness in the California economy,” AKQA (formerly Citron Haligman Bedecarré) has significantly reduced its San Francisco workforce. Sources said about 50 of the approximately 120 workers were axed. Agency COO Tom Bedecarré said there were cuts, but declined to confirm the number. Offices in Europe and Asia were unaffected, he said.

Boeing Selects 6 Semifinalists

CHICAGO—Boeing is set to meet with six semifinalists vying for its $72 million account. Among them is the Chicago office of Foote, Cone & Belding, whose Seattle office previously held the account. The others, all in Chicago, are BBDO, DDB, Leo Burnett, J. Walter Thompson and Ogilvy & Mather, sources said. Publicis in Mid America, Campbell Mithun and Young & Rubicam were cut. The review is being led by Bob Wolf Partners/TPG in Los Angeles. A cut to three will follow, with a decision Oct. 9.

Coca-Cola to Launch Diet Coke With Lemon

NEW YORK—Beginning with a rollout in the Midwest, Coca-Cola will introduce Diet Coke with lemon this fall with an ad campaign and a relaunch of www.dietcoke.com. Diet Coke’s agency, Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore., is expected to be assigned duties for the beverage.

Arizona Keeps Anti-Tobacco Contracts Delayed

LOS ANGELES—Arizona last week decided to keep its anti-tobacco contract on hold and said it is likely the ad and PR contract awards will be reversed. The $10-15 million account had been awarded to E.B. Lane Marketing Communications in Phoenix in June [Adweek, July 2]. The state investigated the bid process following protests from other contenders over alleged scoring irregularities.

Y&R Detroit President Joins Wunderman



DETROIT—After nine months as president of Young & Rubicam in Detroit, Laurie Null is heading west to take the top job at the Irvine, Calif., office of Y&R’s promotional unit, Wunderman. Null will join Wunderman Aug. 16 as managing director and supervise a staff of about 150.

Ground Zero Hires Media Veteran

LOS ANGELES—Ground Zero has hired Tom Somerset to replace media director Hal Carlson, who left the Marina del Rey, Calif., shop in April for Los Angeles ad agency Lunch. Somerset, 52, was most recently media director at 120 Advertising in Los Angeles.

Deutsch Withdraws From Universal Review



NEW YORK—Citing current client workload, Deutsch has withdrawn from the creative review for Universal Studios’ estimated $30-40 million theme-parks account. Still chasing the Orlando, Fla.-based business are david andgoliath, Los Angeles; Doner, Southfield, Mich., The Martin Agency, Richmond, Va.; McKinney & Silver, Raleigh, N.C.; and The Richards Group, Dallas.

Arnold Makes Staffing Cuts

BOSTON—Arnold last week cut approximately 3-4 percent of its staff nationwide, or about 30-40 employees. Most of them were media staff in Boston, sources said.